Professor Avi Loeb has been elected a member of the American Academy of Arts & Sciences. The Academy is one of the nation's most prestigious honorary societies and a leading center for independent policy research. Members contribute to Academy studies of science and technology policy, global security, social policy and American institutions, the humanities, and education.
Among the 2011 class of scholars, scientists, writers, artists, civic, corporate, and philanthropic leaders are winners of the Nobel, Pulitzer, and Pritzker Prizes; the Turing Award; MacArthur and Guggenheim fellowships; and Kennedy Center Honors, Grammy, Golden Globe, and Academy awards.
Loeb currently serves as Chair of the Department of Astronomy at Harvard University and is director of the Institute for Theory and Computation, within the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics.
The new class will be inducted at a ceremony on October 1, 2012, at the Academy's headquarters in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
Other scientists among the newly elected Fellows include: astronomer Paul Butler, discoverer of over 330 planets; cancer researcher Clara Bloomfield, who proved that adult acute leukemia can be cured; public health specialist and former Mexican Minister of Health Julio Frenk; geographer Ellen Mosley-Thompson, who has led expeditions to Antarctica and Greenland; David Page, whose genome sequencing work has advanced understanding of human reproduction; theoretical computer scientists Avi Wigderson; and Nobel laureates Ei-Ichi Negish (chemistry) and H. David Politzer (physics).
Since its founding in 1780 by John Adams, James Bowdoin, John Hancock, and other scholar-patriots, the Academy has elected leading "thinkers and doers" from each generation, including George Washington and Benjamin Franklin in the eighteenth century, Daniel Webster and Ralph Waldo Emerson in the nineteenth, and Albert Einstein and Winston Churchill in the twentieth. The current membership includes more than 250 Nobel laureates and more than 60 Pulitzer Prize winners.
More information on the Academy may be found at http://www.amacad.org.